peaceful parenting

Do This And Stop Your Kids Next Meltdown!

a book you can't put down-6.png

Bam! I threw the mac and cheese box on the ground. 


"Mommy, I want to see the noodles!" my four-year-old was saying over and over again.


After sitting in a plastic chair for 2 hours and watching elementary school graduation in 90 degree weather, followed by 3 hours at the local park for an end of the year party, I was d-o-n-e. 


I just wanted to make dinner in peace, feed my children, and get my butt in bed. My daughter, of course, had other plans. She wanted to help in the kitchen. She was curious if I was making her favorite noodles with the white sauce of the yucky yellow ones.


Of course, I intellectually knew that she just needed some attention and redirection. In that moment though, my anger came out as I threw the box on the ground and began to stomp away.


As my daughter started to cry, I remembered that I now had a choice. I didn't have to continue the power struggle. I didn't have to entrain my anger.


I got down on the ground and knelt in to give her a big old hug.


"I'm sorry," I said. "I am feeling tired and angry. 


I love you."


My daughter squeezed her little arms around my neck. 


The whole thing was over. The anger passed. The crying stopped. 


Want to stop a meltdown with your child? Offer a HUG. It isn't going to work 100% of the time, but it will work 90% (or more). 


And no, the hug doesn't reinforce the negative behavior. You don't have to punish your kid to make them learn. In the words of Jane Nelson, "connect before you correct!"


Happy Parenting Y'all,


Laura 

How To Communicate With Your Husband

“And you’ll never sleep 12 hours again,” I half joked with a bunch of moms with toddlers. ⠀

Laura_0116.jpg

“Oh, but that’s not true,” they said, “you do sleep again.”⠀

And then it hit me. They had slept again because they had asked for help. I hadn’t slept again because, honestly, I hadn’t asked to sleep again. ⠀

So, I asked! ⠀

And, in a time of healing and growth with my husband, we sat down and came up with a plan. ⠀

Mamas, you don’t have to do everything alone! ⠀

You don’t have to balance work, dishes, dinners, driving, and, squeeze in a moment for yourself if you’re lucky. ⠀

Here’s how my husband and I ask for help with each other -⠀

We schedule a time for a one-on-one family meeting. ⠀

We share things that are going well and things that we need help with or concerns we have. ⠀

We stay away from blaming each other. We focus on our own feelings and our own needs. ⠀

If one of us starts to get too upset, we say we will revisit the conversation later. ⠀

Last night as my husband and I giggled while brushing our teeth, I was in awe of our connection and laughter. After having children, it has taken a lot of work to get back to that place. I’m glad we continue to work (and I’m grateful I’m no longer trying to do it all in my home). ⠀

With Love,⠀

Laura⠀

How You Can Stop Yelling At Your Kids

Last month when you screamed at your kids you swore you would never do it again. Your throat was dry and irritated after. The shame you felt lasted ALL DAY LONG. 

You don’t want to yell. You hate that part of yourself as a parent. But no matter how much you say, “I won’t scream next time,” when next time comes, there you are yelling at that beautiful little kiddo of yours.

The reason you haven’t been able to stop screaming has nothing to do with being a “bad” or “good” parent. You simply haven’t had the right plan. 

how to-2.png

Here is where I can help. I used to scream, but it’s so rare that I reach that point anymore. Here is what has worked for me and what can work for you too.

Tool #1: Stop, Drop, and Breathe 

Remember in grade school when we would practice how to Stop, Drop, and Roll in case of a fire?! You need just as solid of a plan for the next time you feel like screaming.  

It isn’t enough to just hope that you won’t scream again. You need a strategy in place for the next time you feel like you are about to open your mouth and explode with anger.

Will you walk away and cool down in the bathroom?

If you are driving, will you pull the car over and wait until the anger subsides? 

Can you keep a calming book in your bag to read until you are grounded again?

Is there a funny term you can tell your children so they know you are angry and the special code means mommy or daddy need a break? Have fun with this one! Maybe the code is “flying squirrel” or “naked mole rat”?!

Can you Stop, Drop, and Breathe?

Create your Stop Screaming Plan now!

Tool #2: Plan Talk Time 

Oh man, I wanted to scold my kids for not picking up their toys when I had asked them FIVE MILLION TIMES.

Instead of yelling though, I went over to the white board where I keep Family Meeting Topics and wrote down the problem, “not picking up toys.” 

I knew that I would later have a chance to talk to my kids about the problem and that during that family meeting, we would brainstorm solutions to solve this problem. I didn’t need to yell because because I knew that we would have a constructive conversation later. 

Remember, not everything has to be done right now.

Tool #3: Dig Down Deep 

Maybe you didn’t feel heard as a child, so now when your child doesn’t listen, you feel like screaming?

Maybe you aren’t aware of what is developmentally appropriate for the age of your and by better understanding normal child behavior, you will feel less reactive to your child? 

Maybe your need for perfectionism is coming out onto your child and you are projecting perfectionism on them?

Or maybe you are so passive that your child is simply running wild in your home?

As the saying goes, “it takes two to tango.” By looking at our own part (sometimes with the help of a professional), we can defuse many power struggles.

And, above all else, keep working on your own sense of worthiness. You are enough. You are worthy. You are loved. The happier you are inside, the less screaming you will want to do.

If you are taking the time to read this post, Congratulations. You are obviously a thoughtful parent that wants to make some positive changes. Be easy on yourself. It takes time to form new habits. 

Make your plan now and print it out. Carry your Stop Screaming Plan with you everywhere you go and reference it the next time you feel like yelling?

Like these tips? Sign up for my monthly newsletter to get more tools that will bring your home from crazy to calm.